So the secret’s obviously out on which “mystery” condiment we’ll be embracing today. I rub my hands together with relish and glee (after which I had to give them a right scrubbing because my hands were coated in green goo and whatever it is that “glee” is made of? It’s invisible, but surprisingly difficult to remove from one’s skin 😉 ) before diving into this challenge with veritable litres of gusto (I don’t know what that means either, but just go with it).
In the interest of not keeping any other secrets from you guys, I’ll be up front here and let you know the real reason that this themed month even exists. Essentially, every year at the start of cottage season, Kevin and I buy one of those 3 pack BBQ condiment sets (you know the ones I mean with 1 bottle each of ketchup, mustard and relish). Here’s the thing though, particularly with the ketchup and the relish, we literally don’t use them at any other time of the year. So, every single year, we end up with 1/3-2/3 full bottles of ketchup and relish that sit in our fridge for months before being tossed. Repeat this cycle at the start of next year’s cottage season. *le sigh*
So much waste!! I say to myself every single year, shaking my head forlornly.
This year, and in particular, this month, I opted to change all that. If I could work these bad boys into some angelic and delicious confections, then they need not sully my local compost, recycling and/or garbage with their unused contents (and condiments 😉 ).
Cue the violins of good ideas!!! (not really sure which ones those are, but, if you’re like me, then this handy-dandy interwebs image might help you out/ express your feelings perfectly:
I mean “You had me at Cello”, aren’t they “Bass”-ically all the same? 😉 . I know they’re different, but the puns just couldn’t be contained. You have to realize that puns with me are like trying to completely eradicate a pandemic. Just when you finally think you’ve got one area under control, those sneaky little buggers escape across the border and continue on their merry way changing and reinfecting as they go. There’s a reason that they say laughter is infectious right? Ummm…that analogy may have gone off the rails a little bit, but you see where I’m going with that right?) I started off by trying to think of what goes well with relish (aside from all the other condiments of course). Lemon-dill is a pretty classic combo (and also, on a completely unrelated note, I still have a lemon in my fridge in need of using up. I swear this had no impact whatsoever on my flavour choices 🤥 (lying face emoji!!! I didn’t even know this existed. I don’t love it as much as the copious amounts of vomiting one that I recently discovered – – but that seemed a little gross to bring up considering I’m already talking about green relish. I didn’t want you to get the wrong idea. Oh wait, I guess I mentioned it after all didn’t I? It has no relation to the edibility of this dessert I swear! (and I didn’t use a lying face picture after that one, so you know it must be true! 😉 ).Anyway, getting us back on track, these essentially just taste like lemon cupcakes. The nod to relish here is really more in terms of it adding a nice texture. Before making these, all that mental energy devoted to lemon and relish and how this might be the worst idea ever had me thinking about being ill, which in turn made me think about honey lemon ginger tea and hot toddy’s. Continuing along those lines, my own nod to making these better was by piping on a large dollop of Hot Toddy Cream Cheese Frosting. That’s just fun to say right there, but it also tastes delicious.
Now, if you’re ever looking for some emergency desserts that you can make only with what you had previously surmised to be too strange and disparate a combination of ingredients, you can make these cupcakes and no longer find yourself in such a pickle.
Yield: 2 dozen mini cupcakes
Heavily adapted from Delish
- 3/4 cups pastry flour (or AP is OK too, I just prefer pastry flour for cake and cupcakes. Trust me when I say it really does make a difference)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup vegan butter, softened
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons cane sugar
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/8 teaspoon pure lemon extract
- 1/4 cup vegan sour cream (or yogurt)
- 1 egg replacer
- 1/4 cup relish
Hot Toddy Cream Cheese Frosting:
- 1/3 cup vegan cream cheese
- 1 1/2 tablespoons vegan butter
- 1 1/2 tablespoons bourbon
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 3 tablespoons honey (or agave or maple syrup or corn syrup if avoiding honey)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 1/2 – 2 cups icing sugar
- Preheat oven to 325F and line a mini cupcake pan with cupcake liners.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.
- In a large bowl, cream together butter, brown sugar, cane sugar and maple syrup. Add vanilla and lemon extract. Beat in the sour cream, egg replacer and relish.
- Fold in the flour mixture until combined (try not to overmix)
- Fill each mini cupcake liner (pretty close to the top is fine) and bake for about 15-20 minutes, turning pan halfway through baking, until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean, Allow to cool completely before frosting.
- For the frosting, beat together cream cheese, butter, bourbon, lemon zest, honey and cinnamon until fully combined.
- Slowly add the icing sugar until you get your desired consistency and flavour.
- Place bowl of frosting in the refrigerator until ready to pipe onto cooled cupcakes and dust top with more cinnamon if desired.
- Store in the refrigerator.